Business August 29, 2019 Last updated August 28th, 2019 142 Reads share

UK Gov’s Big Projects Under Threat

UK Gov Big ProjectsImage Credit: Deposit Photos

Concerns over UK.Gov’s Big IT Projects

HMRC’s flagship programs such as ‘Making Tax Digital’ and ‘Customs Declaration Service’ along with a list of other IT projects are in danger. According to the Annual report presented by the Infrastructure Projects Authority (IPA), the authority highlighted nine government (ICT) projects that are raising doubts on their successful delivery due to the high-risks associated with some of their aspects or areas.

What do you need to know about ‘Making Tax Digital’?

‘Making Tax Digital’ is one of the game-changing initiatives, introduced by HM Revenue & Customs, to help businesses get their tax right and to help them stay on top of their finances. It is aimed at making the tax system more efficient, more reliable, more effective and more simple for businesses that are struggling to get their tax right.

According to the program, businesses generating taxable profits that go above the VAT threshold will be required to use this service in order to store their records digitally and submit their VAT returns through an MTD compliant software. If you think MTD is applicable to you and you are not sure what to do, speaking to a VAT accountant will help.

What do you need to know about ‘Customs declaration service’?

Customs declaration service, introduced by HM Revenue & Customs, was intended to replace the current ‘Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF) system over a period of three phases between August 2018 and beginning of 2019.

CDS is aimed at revolutionizing the existing system of customs declaration that has to be completed and filed by importers and exporters, whenever they are trading outside the European Union (EU). If you are an Import and Export Business you should speak to an Accountant or an Accounting firm to make sure you remain compliant.

What are the highlights of the Infrastructure and Projects Authority’s (IPA) report?

The report has flagged the projects that are amber-red, red is when the successful delivery of the project appears impossible and amber-red signifies the success of its delivery is in doubt.

The report also highlights the Cabinet office’s ‘Digital Identity Project’, as the only project to be marked as red by the watchdogs.

There are 27 out of 133 government projects, with a combined worth of about 10 billion, that have been categorized as Information and communication technology (ICT) projects. The other 106 projects fall under different categories with most of them having considerable digital characteristics as well.

Out of these 133 projects, 38 have been flagged as amber-red, 66 flagged as amber and 18 have been rated as amber-green. Amber means that the delivery seems possible but there are genuine issues to resolve, and finally amber-green means the probability of successful delivery of the project, considering its time, budget and quality is very high.

HMRC's Big Projects under threat

Why were ‘Making Tax Digital’ and ‘Customs Declaration Service’ flagged as amber-red?

As the report suggests, ‘Making Tax Digital’ was flagged as amber-red last year, due to issues and doubts that were arising due to the challenges in delivering the correct functionality, however, further complexities were raised due to concerns with planning in parallel for VAT accounting if Britain exits the European Union without a deal.

On the other hand, ‘Customs declaration service’, that was aimed to replace the Customs Handling of Import and Export Freight (CHIEF),  faced IT related issues due to which it has also been flagged as amber-red. This came in response to the issues that have been repeatedly raised because of the deadline imposed by Brexit- 31st October this year.

Which other ICT projects have been flagged as amber-red?

Following is the list of the other ICT projects that have been flagged as amber/red.

  1. The Home office’s METIS program
  2. The DHSC’s Health and Social Care Network program
  3. The DHSC’s IT Infrastructure Sourcing Programme.
  4. The MOD’s New Style of Information Technology (base) program
  5. The MOD’s Future Beyond Line of Sight program
  6. The Home Office’s National Law Enforcement Data program


Even though these programs are at the risk of failing, it doesn’t mean that there will be any excuses permitted if compliance requirements are not met as required by HMRC. It is therefore advisable to find an accountantaccounting firm nearbyonline accountants or chartered accountants who can help you with compliance and the required growth solutions.

UK Government – Deposit Photos

Thao Le

Thao Le

Thao Le is a Senior Accounting Manager at Clear House Accountants. Having worked and grown in the industry for a number of years she is now responsible for a team of accountants, tax planners and bookkeepers, working with them to help clients from a variety of industries, grow, save money and plan for the future. Thao holds a Bachelor and Masters degree in Accounting and Finance and is currently working towards her ACCA, she is also a Xero and Quickbooks Certified Advisor. Thao believes her expertise lies in high-level tax planning, management accounting and strategic business planning based on financial performance and business analytics. Her experience, expertise and knowledge make her an exceptional contributor at clear house towards various articles and research content.

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